Industry During His Committee Hearing
September 13, 2006
Just as his opportunity to
ask probing questions to Steve Marshall, President of BP Exploration
(Alaska) Inc.; Don Young left his meeting and allowed a fellow
republican to chair the committee said Benson.
Since the Exxon Valdez disaster in March 1989, according to The Center for Responsive Politics, a non-partisan, non-profit research group based in Washington, D.C. that tracks money in politics and its effect on elections and public policy, Rep. Don Young has received $915,763 from the Oil and Gas Industry. In this current election cycle (2005 2006), according to the Center, the Oil and Gas Industry has contributed $49,550 to Young.
Rep. Young's Top Contributors, since the Exxon Valdez disaster are: #1 VECO Corp, $125,650; #2 BP, $114,758; #6 VECO Inc. $74, 514; and #13 Exxon, $60,300.
On August 22, 2006, the Benson for Congress campaign said they emailed an invitation Rep. Don Young's campaign to invite the congressman to a series of Town Hall meetings. On Thursday August 23, 2006 the Benson Campaign received a phone call from Rep. Young campaign manager Steve Dougherty with a response of "NO" said campaign officials.
The invitation would have given both campaigns the opportunity to meet with voters of Juneau, Anchorage and Fairbanks in a Town Hall Meeting format in order for voters to ask each candidate questions. According to information provided by the Benson campaign, Dougherty stated that Congressman Young would continue his "tradition" of only participating in the KAKM debate.
"We feel that the Alaskan people have been left out once again of the election process. They are not being allowed the opportunity to speak to their elected official and have their questions answered", stated Kris J. Pierce, Diane Benson's campaign manager.
Pierce said the election process is an opportunity for the employers of public officials to "interview" the potential employees. How can anyone apply for job without being interviewed by the people you are to serve? How can our government be for the people and by the people if it is the people that are being left out in the cold?
"Why is Don Young hiding out and refusing to face the voters? Don Young has a lot to answer for, and he should debate Diane Benson. The voters deserve to hear these candidates discuss the issues," said Jake Metcalfe, Alaska Democratic Party chair.
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